August 1, 2021
Peter is probably my favorite disciple – so wonderful yet so fallible – so unrecognizing of who he actually is in Christ – hiding behind a curtain of bravado (Matthew 16:21-22) – distancing himself from himself as he denied his Lord (Matthew 26:69-75) and on and yet. Yet, these instances actually are helpful in leading Peter home – Peter is not the big tough take charge guy he tries to project at all. Rather, he is a precious beloved child of God gifted beyond his understanding. Jesus pulls back the curtain on the beach on Easter Monday and lets Peter know he is loved. Loved and forgiven. Loved and forgiven. Christ offered the man the opportunity to use his God given gifts of courage, intellect, compassion, and hunger for the household of God to GO and share these same revelations with others.
Perhaps that is why he penned these words in 1 Peter 2:9-10:
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
That truth revealed, Peter continues by explaining how the people are to use this knowledge and their giftedness (vv11-17):
Beloved, I urge you as aliens and exiles to abstain from the desires of the flesh that wage war against the soul. Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that, though they malign you as evildoers, they may see your honorable deeds and glorify God when he comes to judge. For the Lord’s sake accept the authority of every human institution, whether of the emperor as supreme, or of governors, as sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to praise those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing right you should silence the ignorance of the foolish. As servants of God, live as free people, yet do not use your freedom as a pretext for evil. Honor everyone. Love the family of believers. Fear God. Honor the emperor.
I pray that we claim these words of truth for ourselves as well and live into them.